US:Ford ad decision angers gay groups - Ford Forums - Mustang Forum, Ford Trucks, Ford Focus and Ford Cars
Ford Forum Ford Forum

» Auto Insurance
» Featured Product
ยป Wheel & Tire Center

Go Back   Ford Forums - Mustang Forum, Ford Trucks, Ford Focus and Ford Cars > Fordforums Community > Latest Ford News and Racing News > Ford Worldwide News
Register Home Forum Active Topics Photo Gallery Auto Loans Garage Mark Forums Read Auto Escrow

FordForums.com is the premier Ford Forum on the internet. Registered Users do not see the above ads.
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 12-06-2005, 06:35   #1 (permalink)
Registered User
 
Stacy94PGT's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: The Hills of North Georgia,USA
Posts: 7,859
US:Ford ad decision angers gay groups

Ford ad decision angers gay groups

Conservative group lifts boycott after Ford says most brands will not market to homosexuals.

David Phillips / The Detroit News

Gay and lesbian advocacy groups sharply criticized Ford Motor Co. for agreeing to stop advertising in gay-themed publications in the face of a boycott by the conservative American Family Association.

The AFA, based in Tupelo, Miss., launched a boycott of Ford in May to protest marketing aimed at gay and lesbian consumers as well as benefits the company extends to same-sex couples. The boycott was suspended for six months in June when Ford and dealer representatives met with the group. With the boycott set to resume last week, Ford dispatched two top company officers -- Ziad Ojakli, group vice president for corporate affairs, and David Leitch, senior vice president and general counsel, and a top dealer to Tupelo to meet with AFA officials last Tuesday.

Ford told the AFA that its Ford, Lincoln and Mercury brands have not advertised in gay and lesbian publications and will not in the future, said Ford spokesman Mike Moran. Ford's Jaguar and Land Rover brands will no longer target gay consumers through advertising, a move Moran called a "business decision."

Only Volvo, Ford's Sweden-based brand, will continue marketing directly to gays and lesbians. After the meeting, AFA, which has 3 million members, agreed to lift the boycott. That has led some gay and lesbian organizations to say the automaker caved in to pressure from the religious right.

"We are deeply dismayed that Ford has entered into a confidential agreement with the extremist American Family Association that requires Ford to stop advertising in lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender media," a group of 17 gay and lesbian organizations said in a joint statement issued Monday.

"If there is an agreement with AFA, we expect Ford to disavow it. We expect Ford to publicly reaffirm its historic support for our community. And, we expect Ford to meet with LGBT representatives this week to resolve these concerns."

The boycott was partly initiated by ads used in Europe that offended some Ford customers.

Ford said that it could have marketed its products in a manner that was just as effective without offending consumers.

Despite the agreement, Ford said it will continue to advertise to select consumer groups, as needed.

"We reserve the right to advertise our brands and products wherever we think it makes business sense," Ojakli and Leitch wrote in a letter Monday to Suzanne Wait, head of Ford's gay and lesbian employee group.

And Ford said its nondiscrimination policies covering employees, regardless of race, religion, gender, sexual orientation and cultural and physical differences, will not change. Moran would not say whether Ford plans to continue contributing to gay and lesbian organizations and causes, which was another issue that led to AFA to launch the boycott in May.

Jerry Reynolds, an influential Ford dealer in Garland, Texas, who joined company executives in the meeting with AFA officials last week, said many dealers were concerned about the boycott. In the end, he said Ford made the changes because of financial concerns.

"It had a lot more to do with pure business than anything else. They are cutting back everywhere," Reynolds said.

AFA Chairman Donald E. Wildmon said the group ended the boycott after local dealers made the resolution possible. "While we still have a few differences with Ford, we feel that our concerns are being addressed in good faith and will continue to be addressed in the future," he said. "The dealers were very helpful in bridging a gap and opening a line of communication between AFA and Ford. The dealers are basically our kind of people who share many of our concerns."
__________________
Stacy94PGT
My first car was a 67 Mustang Coupe, 2nd one was a 67 Cougar XR-7, 3rd one was a 66 Mustang Coupe. Why did I get rid of these cars for ? I know why, because I'm stupid, stupid, stupid.

My next Ford.....
Stacy94PGT is offline   Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Old 12-12-2005, 06:07   #2 (permalink)
Registered User
 
Stacy94PGT's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: The Hills of North Georgia,USA
Posts: 7,859
Re: US:Ford ad decision angers gay groups

Gays forgive trend-setting Ford for pulling ads

By Deb Price
The Detroit News

Five years later, gay car enthusiasts still gush about their Motor City gathering: The Big Three rolled out the welcome mat -- showing off futuristic autos, providing tours and even giving out Ford T-shirts.

"It was a once-in-a-lifetime thing," recalls Frank Markus of Lambda Car Club International's Detroit chapter, where half the members work in auto-related jobs. "It was definitely a 'Cadillac event,'" he adds, using a compliment favored by collectors of luxury cars.

It also happened to be the year that Ford, General Motors and DaimlerChrysler jointly announced they were extending health benefits to their gay workers' partners. Many club members, inspired by the Big Three's leadership, drove back home to ask their own employers for equal benefits.

Detroit's gay community and the automakers have a deep, respectful friendship. Gay Ford workers originally dubbed themselves "Ford Family." Now known as Ford Globe, the group's Web site details a decade of gay-friendly policies at Ford, the only automaker to get a perfect score in 2004 and 2005 on the gay Human Rights Campaign's Corporate Equality Index.

So nowhere more than in the Motor City are gay folks stunned by the news that Ford, following talks with the anti-gay American Family Association about its boycott threats, announced the company will no longer advertise Jaguars and Land Rovers in the gay press.

Ford insists any suggestion it is retreating from its gay-friendly history "is just plain wrong." But it also says, "We don't intend -- directly or indirectly -- to take sides on controversial or emotionally charged social or moral issues." Hmmmm.

As we say in my business, "More will be revealed." But Ford's stumbling p.r. efforts have left Motor City gay folks feeling hurt or confused, yet eager to give an old friend the benefit of the doubt. As many put it, "I think Ford just made a blunder; I've made plenty."

Leslie Thompson, executive director of gay Affirmations, wants to believe Ford's decision not to advertise anything but Volvos in the gay press was "driven strictly by a business case." Ford, she notes, was the first of the Big Three to contribute $250,000 toward building Metro Detroit's $5.3 million gay community center, set to open next year. That $250,000 check was a record donation by a Fortune 500 firm.

"It's impossible to begin to explain how much the Big Three make a difference," says Thompson. "We create a safe space. You can walk down the hallway holding your partner's hand. Or just say 'I'm gay' out loud and not be afraid."

One big new gay fear is that Ford has lost its way. The cover of Between the Lines, Michigan's gay paper, captures that worry: A gay-pride rainbow bumper sticker on a Ford pickup has had "AFA" plastered over it. Where did the gay artist get the Ford pickup? She owns it.

The other new fear among those of us who're gay and prize the jobs Ford provides and the good it does is that gay national groups will lash out. Between the Lines wisely pleads that anyone mulling a gay boycott instead "come to Michigan. See the hard-won benefits and donations before you work to dismantle this valuable relationship."

As anti-gay rhetoric heated up in the 1990s, Ford did have a better idea -- reach out to gay workers and customers. Now, Ford's loyal gay friends are eager to forgive and forget. We just need to hear Ford say, without hedging, that it still values having a good relationship with us.
__________________
Stacy94PGT
My first car was a 67 Mustang Coupe, 2nd one was a 67 Cougar XR-7, 3rd one was a 66 Mustang Coupe. Why did I get rid of these cars for ? I know why, because I'm stupid, stupid, stupid.

My next Ford.....
Stacy94PGT is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-13-2005, 06:02   #3 (permalink)
Registered User
 
Stacy94PGT's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: The Hills of North Georgia,USA
Posts: 7,859
Re: US:Ford ad decision angers gay groups

Gay rights groups ask Ford to reconsider ads

Automaker urged to make clear that it wasn't reacting to watchdog group's boycott.

Jeff Plungis / Detroit News Washington Bureau

WASHINGTON -- Leading gay rights organizations met with Ford Motor Co. officials here Monday and asked the company to reverse a decision to stop advertising in gay-themed publications and distance itself from a conservative group.

The groups asked Ford to resume advertising for its Land Rover and Jaguar brands and make it clear that it was not making decisions based on a boycott by the American Family Association, a conservative watchdog group in Tupelo, Miss.

Ford officials said advertising decisions would be based only on business interests, said Jeff Montgomery, executive director of Michigan's Triangle Foundation, one of seven gay rights groups at the meeting.

"They're very concerned about the perception they caved in to the AFA," Montgomery said.

Ford, considered a progressive company in dealing with gay and lesbian consumers and employees, now finds itself the target of criticism from groups on both sides of an ideological divide.

The powerful American Family Association lifted its boycott against Ford Nov. 30 but still disagrees with some of its policies, such as providing employee benefits to same-sex partners.

Now several gay and lesbian groups have accused Ford of backing down under pressure.

"Any effort to appease a handful of vocal extremists backfired and offended millions of fair-minded consumers instead," Joe Solmonese, president of Human Rights Campaign, a national gay-rights organization, said after the meeting.

Ford officials Monday reasserted the company's respect for the gay and lesbian community. But Ford made no commitment to revisit the decision to drop ads in gay publications.

"We value all people -- regardless of their race, religion, gender, sexual orientation and cultural or physical differences," Ford Chairman and CEO Bill Ford Jr. said in a statement released after the meeting. "This is a historical commitment of the Ford Motor Co. that I intend to carry forward."

The company said it would "vigorously promote our products to all people, and we will continue to treat our customers and employees with dignity and respect."

After a meeting with the AFA late last month, Ford said its Ford, Lincoln and Mercury brands don't advertise in gay and lesbian publications and will not in the future. It also said it would stop Jaguar and Land Rover ads aimed at gay consumers.

Ford's Swedish Volvo subsidiary will continue advertising to gay and lesbian consumers.

Over the past week, gay rights groups like the Human Rights Campaign, Family Pride and the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation have sharply criticized Ford.

Ford said its meeting last month with the American Family Council was to clear up "misunderstanding about Ford's policies and practices."

In a Dec. 5 memo summarizing Ford's talks with the AFA, two Ford officials said the company could have avoided some of the controversy.

"Frankly, in retrospect we certainly could have marketed our product in a manner that was just as effective without offending anyone," said the memo signed by Ziad Ojakli, group vice president of corporate affairs, and David Leitch, senior vice president and general counsel.

AFA spokeswoman Kathryn Hooks said Monday the group would have no further comment.
__________________
Stacy94PGT
My first car was a 67 Mustang Coupe, 2nd one was a 67 Cougar XR-7, 3rd one was a 66 Mustang Coupe. Why did I get rid of these cars for ? I know why, because I'm stupid, stupid, stupid.

My next Ford.....
Stacy94PGT is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-14-2005, 18:51   #4 (permalink)
Registered User
 
Stacy94PGT's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: The Hills of North Georgia,USA
Posts: 7,859
Re: US:Ford ad decision angers gay groups

Ford to advertise Jaguar, Land Rover in gay publications

Reuters

DETROIT - Ford Motor Co. on Wednesday said it will run advertisements in gay publications, reversing a decision last week to pull all advertising of its Jaguar and Land Rover luxury brands from that sector. In a letter to some gay, lesbian and human rights groups, Ford said it has decided to run corporate ads for all its eight brands, including its Jaguar and Land Rover luxury brands, in the targeted publications.
__________________
Stacy94PGT
My first car was a 67 Mustang Coupe, 2nd one was a 67 Cougar XR-7, 3rd one was a 66 Mustang Coupe. Why did I get rid of these cars for ? I know why, because I'm stupid, stupid, stupid.

My next Ford.....
Stacy94PGT is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-15-2005, 06:40   #5 (permalink)
Registered User
 
Stacy94PGT's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: The Hills of North Georgia,USA
Posts: 7,859
Re: US:Ford ad decision angers gay groups

Ford ads will run in gay media

Automaker says its decision to drop Jaguar and Land Rover ads had been misperceived.

Jeff Plungis / Detroit News Washington Bureau

Key events

May 31, 2005: American Family Association launches a boycott against Ford Motor Co. saying the automaker has given thousands of dollars to gay rights groups, offers benefits to same-sex couples and targets gay customers with advertising.
June 7: AFA suspends boycott until Dec. 1 after meeting with Ford officials and dealers.
Nov. 30: AFA announced it was lifting the boycott after meeting with Ford executives and dealers.
Dec. 6: Ford Motor Co. confirms its luxury Jaguar and Land Rover brands will no longer advertise in gay publications.
Monday: Ford met with several gay and lesbian organizations about their concerns over the automaker's advertising policies.
Wednesday: Ford said it would reinstate and expand the scope of its advertising in gay publications after criticism from gay rights groups.

WASHINGTON-- Ford Motor Co. said Wednesday it would buy corporate advertising in gay and lesbian publications in 2006, responding to concerns that it had dropped ads to end a conservative group's boycott of Ford brands.

In a letter to seven gay-rights groups it met with in Washington Monday, Joe Laymon, Ford's head of human resources, said the company's decision to drop ads for its Jaguar and Land Rover brands in gay and lesbian publications in 2006 had been misperceived.

"As a result, we have decided to run corporate ads in these targeted publications that will include not only Jaguar/Land Rover but all eight of Ford's vehicle brands," Laymon said.

"It is my hope that this will remove any ambiguity about Ford's desire to advertise to all important audiences and put this particular issue behind us," Laymon added.

The turnabout is Ford's latest response to an ideological quandary that has alternately put the automaker at odds with conservatives and liberals.

Ford has faced a firestorm of protest in the gay community since last week, when news broke that the American Family Association, a conservative group based in Tupelo, Miss., ended a six-month boycott after a meeting with Ford representatives. The group cited Ford's decision to drop ads in gay publications as a factor in its decision.

The Human Rights Campaign Wednesday welcomed Ford's commitment to "equality and fairness."

"Advertising all of its brands in the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered press makes a strong statement," said David Smith, vice president of policy and strategy at the Human Rights Campaign. "We believe this represents more than what was asked for. Ford did a really good job of clearing the air."

In its letter, Ford said it valued diversity among all "constituents," and its corporate values include "respect for our customers, communities, employees, suppliers and dealers." Ford said all of those commitments remain unchanged.

The company will continue to support events in the gay and lesbian community, but is curtailing charitable support "in all communities" in 2006, the letter said.

The American Family Association did not immediately return a phone call seeking comment.

On Monday, the group said it would not make any further comment on Ford advertising.

Public relations experts said Ford made a mistake by putting itself in the middle of one of the country's hottest cultural wars.

Ford abandoned a core principles of corporate P.R., that beliefs and business do not mix, said Jim Sanfilippo, senior industry analyst with AMCI, a Bloomfield Hills marketing consulting firm.

In doing so, Ford jeopardized its standing in a very important and growing market segment, he said.

By correcting its mistake -- which was appearing to give in to pressure exerted by the American Family Council -- Ford should be able to move on, Sanfilippo said.

"They are not in the same space with that group," Sanfilippo said. "You cannot satisfy them unless you accede to their beliefs. Ford Motor Co. isn't in the business of beliefs. They believe all purchasers are equal."

The groups Ford met with were the Human Rights Campaign, the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation, Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays, the Triangle Foundation, the National Youth Advocacy Coalition and the National Black Justice Coalition.
__________________
Stacy94PGT
My first car was a 67 Mustang Coupe, 2nd one was a 67 Cougar XR-7, 3rd one was a 66 Mustang Coupe. Why did I get rid of these cars for ? I know why, because I'm stupid, stupid, stupid.

My next Ford.....
Stacy94PGT is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-16-2005, 05:23   #6 (permalink)
Registered User
 
Stacy94PGT's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: The Hills of North Georgia,USA
Posts: 7,859
Re: US:Ford ad decision angers gay groups

Group renews boycott threat against Ford over ads

Automaker broke 'good faith' pact in decision to advertise in gay media, conservatives say.

Jeff Plungis / Detroit News Washington Bureau

WASHINGTON -- Ford Motor Co. faces the prospect of a new consumer boycott by a conservative group angry over the automaker's decision to resume advertising in predominantly gay media.

The American Family Association, a conservative group based in Tupelo, Miss., called off an earlier boycott after reaching an deal with the automaker over the ads.

"Unfortunately, some Ford officials made the decision to violate the good faith agreement," AFA Chairman Don Wildmon said in a statement Thursday. "All we wanted was for Ford to refrain from choosing sides in the cultural war, and supporting groups which promote same-sex marriage is not remaining neutral."

Because Ford broke the agreement, Wildmon said the option of another boycott is "very much alive."

Last spring, the AFA launched a boycott in response to "Ford's support for the homosexual agenda and homosexual marriage."

Under pressure from some dealers who feared sales would suffer, Ford agreed to discuss the matter with the AFA.

Rather than renewing the debate with Wildmon, gay rights groups said Thursday they were ready to move on.

"The AFA is never going to be satisfied with anything," said Jeff Montgomery, executive director of the Triangle Foundation, Michigan's largest gay-rights group.

"Everybody has made their position clear," Montgomery added. "Now that we have all had our fair say, we should just get on with our lives and move on."

Ford spokeswoman Kathleen Vokes said the automaker had no further comment on the matter.

Last week, Ford agreed to pull ads for its Jaguar and Land Rover brands from gay publications next year. The decision followed a meeting between Ford officials and the American Family Association in Tupelo.

The news sparked outrage in the gay community. Ford met with gay rights advocates in Washington on Monday and told the groups on Wednesday it would purchase corporate advertising, on behalf of its eight brands, in gay and lesbian publications.
__________________
Stacy94PGT
My first car was a 67 Mustang Coupe, 2nd one was a 67 Cougar XR-7, 3rd one was a 66 Mustang Coupe. Why did I get rid of these cars for ? I know why, because I'm stupid, stupid, stupid.

My next Ford.....
Stacy94PGT is offline   Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Reply

  Ford Forums - Mustang Forum, Ford Trucks, Ford Focus and Ford Cars > Fordforums Community > Latest Ford News and Racing News > Ford Worldwide News



Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On


Powered by vBadvanced CMPS v3.2.2

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 15:00.



Powered by vBulletin® Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Content Relevant URLs by vBSEO 3.6.0
Garage Plus vBulletin Plugins by Drive Thru Online, Inc.